Dealing with Hot Flashes? Here's How to Manage Them

Dealing with Hot Flashes? Here's How to Manage Them

Each year in the United States, more than 1 million women begin their journeys through menopause, which can be a bumpy ride for many thanks to unwelcome side effects. Topping the list of complaints are hot flashes, which affect a whopping 75% of women.

If you’re looking for ways to turn down the heat on these sudden and strong hot flashes, our team here at LaSante Health Center, which includes gynecology experts, can help.

Why the sudden and ferocious heat?

When you begin your transition through menopause, it signals the end of your reproductive years. This occurs when your ovaries start to shut down, which not only means no more eggs, but the production of reproductive hormones — estrogen and progesterone — also declines.

The loss of these hormones can lead to a wide range of side effects, including vaginal dryness, mood swings, bone loss, and hot flashes (as well as night sweats).

This last side effect is known as a vasomotor symptom of menopause and is, far and away, the most common. While we don’t know the exact cause and effect with hot flashes, we do know that the drop in estrogen causes these spikes in your body temperature. In response, your body releases sweat to cool down.

The good news is that most women — about 80% — experience hot flashes for two years or less. That said, you still want solutions for the time that you’re having these hot flashes.

Fighting back against hot flashes

There are several ways in which you can reduce hot flashes, starting with hormone replacement therapy. As the name suggests, we supplement your lost hormones, which can make quick work of pesky menopausal side effects like hot flashes.

Hormone replacement therapy comes in many different forms, including patches, pills, and pellets, and we can help you figure out which delivery method is best for your circumstances.

Other than hormone replacement, there are some techniques for better managing hot flashes, such as:

Stress reduction

Stress can cast a wide net over your health, and this includes exacerbating issues like hot flashes. If you find ways to reduce stress in your life, you might be surprised to see your hot flashes dwindle. 

Deep breathing exercises, walking, yoga, listening to music, turning off your phone — these are just some of the more common ways in which people let off some steam. 

Cold water

It’s a good idea to have a nice, cold bottle of water with you at all times when you’re going through menopause. If you feel a hot flash coming on, you can sip slowly to help regulate your body temperature.

Dress in layers and bring extras

Dress in layers and have extra clothes on hand in case a hot flash strikes, leaving you drenched in sweat at an inopportune time. Whether you’re in a business meeting or out with friends, being prepared for hot flashes can be very helpful.

Know your triggers … and avoid them

Many women report that hot flashes are triggered by such things as:

Track your triggers so you can avoid them while your body adjusts to the drop in estrogen.

If you want to learn more about managing menopause, we’re here to help make this transition go as smoothly as possible. To get started, contact our clinic in Brooklyn, New York. We serve the Flatbush and East Flatbush, Crown Heights, Park Slope, Little Haiti, Little Caribbean, and Prospect Lefferts Gardens communities.

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